Blackhawks

Patrick Kane reflects on Blackhawks training camp

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Patrick Kane reflects on Blackhawks training camp

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Patrick Kane talked Sunday of his weekend spent with teammates as the Blackhawks wrapped up their opening training camp trip to the University of Notre Dame.

“I feel like I got better every day, and I feel like I’m trying some things out there to try and get back to where I feel comfortable. But overall, I thought it was a fun weekend,” Kane said. “It was a great event put on by Notre Dame. It’s always fun coming down here. I feel like it was good time spent here.”

Kane has been under investigation since early August, when a young woman accused him of raping her in his Hamburg, N.Y. home. Kane has not been charged with anything. Kane said he tried to focus on hockey during his time in South Bend.

[MORE: Blackhawks' Scott Darling: 'I'm going to keep my foot on the gas']

“It’s nice to be around my teammates and playing hockey,” he said. “When I’m on the ice, just trying to focus on that. It definitely takes your mind off things.”

But the investigation continues.

On Saturday night the Buffalo News reported, citing four sources, that DNA evidence does not confirm the young woman’s allegations that Kane raped her. Asked on Sunday if he knew when the situation may be resolved, Kane said, “I don’t know anything about that. I don’t think it’s… That would all be speculation, so…”

Kane hadn’t skated much entering this weekend but said he’s feeling like he’s close to where he wants to be.

“I think I’ve gotten better this weekend, but I still want to keep improving,” he said. “I wouldn’t necessarily (say I’m) happy where I am right now, but I feel like I’m confident, improving every day and trying to get to where I need to be by Oct. 7.”

Start of the Blackhawks Dynasty, Part 4: Roster overview

Start of the Blackhawks Dynasty, Part 4: Roster overview

In a 10-part series, we look back at the 10-year anniversary of the 2008-09 season, the start of the Blackhawks dynasty.

Starting a dynasty means you have to identify a group of core players to build your team around. Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, Brent Seabrook, Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews were those guys, along with Marian Hossa, who joined that mix later on.

You also need a mixture of young talent and strong veterans to fill out the depth to become successful. That's exactly what the Blackhawks had at the beginning of their dynasty and throughout.

On the first day of NHL free agency in 2008, the Blackhawks inked All-Star defenseman Brian Campbell to an eight-year deal, which solidified Chicago as a destination players wanted to commit to long term. That same year, Kris Versteeg emerged as the Blackhawks' third Calder Trophy candidate in two years, Martin Havlat and Andrew Ladd set a career high in points with 77 and 49, respectively, while youngsters Dave Bolland, Troy Brouwer and Dustin Byfuglien began to make a name for themselves as valuable pieces to the puzzle.

"Real good group of guys," Joel Quenneville said on Oct. 18, 2008. "I can say that it's the first time I walked in the room where, wow, I was impressed."

Six of the Blackhawks' Top 10 scorers in 2008-09 were aged 23 or younger. The average age for the other four? 27. The youth movement was real and they all contributed in a big way.

Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane, Connor Murphy to participate in USA's Stars and Stripes Showdown

Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane, Connor Murphy to participate in USA's Stars and Stripes Showdown

In honor of the late executive Jim Johannson, who died unexpectedly in his sleep in January at the age of 53, USA Hockey is hosting a Stars and Stripes Showdown at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Michigan on Sunday, Aug. 26 and three Blackhawks will be participating in it: Alex DeBrincat, Patrick Kane and Connor Murphy.

Kane served as USA's captain at the 2018 IIHF World Championship in Denmark this past May and set a new American record with 20 points (eight goals, 12 assists) in 10 tournament contests, which earned him MVP honors. DeBrincat had one goal and eight assists while Murphy led USA with a plus-7 rating.

Other star-studded headliners participating: Connor Hellebuyck, Seth Jones, Dylan Larkin, Auston Matthews, Charlie McAvoy, Zach Parise, Ryan Suter, James van Riemsdyk and Zach Werenski. It's a great group getting together to celebrate the life of Johannson, who was an instrumental part of USA Hockey's program for the last 18 years.

Tickets are being sold for $10 and $15, which you can purchase here. Doors open at 1 p.m. ET with the game starting at 2 p.m.

A few events that will occur throughout the game: a ceremonial puck drop, a live game-worn jersey auction, an online auction featuring game-worn jerseys and autographed NHL memorabilia, special raffles and an opportunity postgame to meet and greet select players and coaches. All proceeds will benefit both the Jim Johannson Legacy Fund of The USA Hockey Foundation and the Ellie Johannson College Fund.